Wednesday, 29 June 2011

Generating renewable electricity from agricultural waste

electricity from agricultural waste we conjure up images of a biogas plant. The truth is, existing biogas plants do recycle agricultural waste but also require edible agricultural products such as corn. Latest technology and research have proved that it is possible to generate electricity with nothing but pure agricultural waste. That would mean recycling animal dung, discarded plant husk, rotten leaves etc. to produce electrical power, and all this without using any edible agricultural product.

Researchers at the Fraunhofer Institute for Ceramic Technologies and Systems IKTS in Dresden, Germany have developed the first ever biogas plant that works completely from agricultural waste and does not require any edible product. Considering the number of people who still live without electric power all over the world, this technology will bring about a revolution.

The need for a renewable electricity system cannot be over emphasized in today's world. Future success of this system will have far reaching consequences. The new plant takes 50 to 70 percent less time for decomposing raw materials stored in a silage for power generation. That would mean more power generation in less time and increased efficiency. Even corn stalks can be used, the new system utilizes special enzymes to break down the cellulose in corn stalks before storing it in silage, thus making 100 percent use of all waste material with 85 percent success in power generation.
Clean diesel made from PVC pipe, sewer sludge, agricultural waste and plastic
The very thought that good quality diesel can be produced from absolutely anything that has a carbon component is more than exciting. Everything from PVC products, wood, sewer waste, dustbin trash, wood, agricultural waste to coal can be recycled to produce diesel. Imagine ( the impact on the economies of nations if such a thing can be successfully implemented. Researchers at UC Riverside have developed a new technology that'll do just that. In fact they are investing a whopping $15 million to set up a pilot plant.
Rice Husks & Biomass Gasification to power rural India
In Indian rural areas where people still live without power the concept of Husk Power Systems is fast gaining acceptance. Afterall most villages don't have the grid power for building solar plants or wind farms, and these husk power systems offer a fantastic way of recycling agricultural waste for power generation.
At present there are about 50 villages in the state of Bihar, India where this system is functioning. Discarded rice husks form the primary raw material for electric power generation in these plants. About 1.5 kilos of rice husk on gasification produces 1KWh electricity. Most of these mini power plants have the capacity to produce 35 to 100 kwh electricity.
900 Megawatts of Biomass Power by UK's Drax Group
UK's Drax Group in collaboration with Siemens announced ( their intention to build at least three 300 MW biomass power plants in the UK. Raw materials to be used for power generation in these plants will include agricultural waste and energy crops. These three plants will probably supply 15 percent of renewable energy in the United Kingdom.

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